Look what I found in my email today. Allow me to share this to all parents out there who, like me, entrust their kids to these modern day unsung heroes. To the often under-appreciated educators of our time, kudos to all your hard work and may you find more fulfillment in 2016!
Some people really have no idea about the kind of work that teachers have. As an educator, the word “teacher” doesn’t even cover it. We are more than a teacher. A teacher is expected to be a learner, an inquirer, an observer, and an influencer. At APEC Schools, where I practice my calling, I get to be all these and more. I am writing for all the teachers, master teachers, head teachers and those who work in the education industry to let them know that they are doing an exceptional job.
Being in this industry takes hard work and a lot of training. It’s a continuous learning process to serve better. Some people have delusions that anyone can do what a teacher, master teacher or a head teacher does on a typical day. Teachers are not in it for the money because we found rewards in different aspects of this work. More than the skill, it’s the passion that drives us to serve. Teaching is not for everyone.
To be a teacher means having your performance observed, judged and critiqued by those who merely see just a part. It means that you cannot rest or take a nap while other people are still in school because it could mean differently to those who’ll see.
To be a teacher is to be a parent to more than a hundred children and still be able to attend to their individual needs, being there in their troubled times, and celebrating with their victories. It also means understanding what children don’t say, reading by their facial expressions, reactions, and even silence.
It’s about keenly observing who among these kids don’t have food to eat during break time, those who are abused at home and have trouble fitting in; it’s knowing who among them have no school supplies – being a teacher is about being there for them and helping provide what they lack.
Teaching is not confined within the four corners of the classroom. Wherever you find yourself in, at home or in the park, it is an extension of the classroom. It means thinking about these kids even if you’re already resting at home. It means cancelling your get together with family or friends because of a conference with a parent or a discussion about an incident in class.
To truly be a teacher is to be what the word connotes. But among those roles that I take as a teacher, my most favorite is that of being a student and putting myself in these young learners’ shoes – being able to understand their generation, learn their culture, their likes, their dreams, their pains and fears.
To truly be a teacher is to work before complaining, to accept before rejecting. It means to just do it, to be brave in accomplishing tasks. To truly be a teacher means to make the most of what you have, to make things work not because parents or other people expect you to, it’s just because you genuinely want to.
The next time you see a teacher in a classroom full of students attentively listening and engaging in the lesson, remember that the teacher’s job is not easy. We simply try to pull things off to make it look easy, even though it’s not. I can never exchange this job for anything.
To everyone in this industry, we are doing an exceptional job and let’s continue to serve.
Ryan Walter del Mar Sesbreno